Talk to anyone in the ClimaTech industry and they will tell you, the United States’ plans to comprehensively address the challenges of climate change are unprecedented. To face the challenge, renewable generation, storage and transmission must be built quickly across the country.
Until now, fossil generation could be built on compact lots near the people and businesses that consumed the power. Renewable generation, however, requires lots of land far from the end user. Often, the communities that host these facilities feel as if they are bearing the cost of progress without seeing commensurate benefit.
This dynamic is why NIMBYism is so prevalent and powerful. It is why a typical wind farm takes four to eight years to overcome opposition, permit and build. And, it is why the U.S. will not achieve its climate goals unless developers effectively engage with community stakeholders, addressing concerns from special-interest groups and managing opposition from passionate citizens intend on safeguarding their communities.
To effectively navigate this complex landscape, developers require a reliable communications partner that comprehends the intricacies of siting and can help overcome challenges that lie ahead for both existing and future renewable-energy technologies.
Support for Siting Multiple Renewable-Energy Technologies
Across the country wind and solar development is booming. The communities being impacted the most are often rural with an abundance of land. It is common for some residents in those communities to express their opposition through concerns about visual and noise impacts. Providing clients with effective project-specific messaging can help to drive conversations away from those concerns to the positive benefits the projects may have on the host community. In addition, residents will be better informed of the positives of one of the most common forms of climatech.
As the most rapidly evolving renewable-energy technology, battery energy storage continues to struggle with misunderstanding and misinformation about technologies related to modern utility-scale systems. While many residents base their opinions on individual device batteries or old large-scale battery technology, these systems are vastly more complex and safer than communities initially understand.
Through community meetings, webinars and other community-engagement activities Mower has helped its clients counter misinformation among elected officials, community leaders and residents in both rural and urban communities across the U.S.
Hydrogen is seen as one of the most promising forms of renewable energy, and many companies are trying to find their own unique ways to utilize this technology. While hydrogen usage is not new, development of new hydrogen systems makes it essential to understand the communities you are entering into. A combination of premarket research and attentive social listening can provide clients with a clearer picture of concerns and misconceptions to be wary of. This helps to alleviate problems that can arise during development and allow clients to be more prepared heading into public meetings.
For more than 30 years, Mower has been providing support to our energy clients, assisting them in successfully executing public outreach and offering guidance on over 10 gigawatts of approved, permitted and built projects. With a national focus on siting and extensive experience with all seven U.S. ISOs/RTOs, Mower possesses the expertise necessary to assist developers in navigating complex relationships with community groups, local and state governments, and other stakeholders.
No matter where you are in the siting process, Mower is the trusted partner that developers need. If you are interested in learning more about how we can help with siting your next project, please contact John Lacey (Jlacey@mower.com) or Austin Philleo (APhilleo@mower.com).